5 Onboarding Tips to Set Up New Employees for Fast-Paced Success


In today’s highly competitive war for talent, the emphasis should not only be on landing top talent, but also on retaining them.

When looking at attrition statistics, the #1 reason new hires provide when resigning within the first few months is lack of cultural fit. In other words, they just don’t feel like they belong.

When considering all the steps that go into recruiting and hiring, what a travesty it is to have someone leave because they just don’t feel comfortable. This is a waste of time and resources that can be easily avoided.

People decide quickly if they feel at ease within a new organization, and no time period is more significant in determining how a new employee will blend into a company than the first 90 days.

When you consider that most new employee resignations (new hires are defined by employees that have been hired within the previous 12 months) happen within the first few months, it is clear that investing time in creating a supportive, clearly outlined on-boarding process is of tremendous value.

The purpose of this article will be to provide 5 easy to implement on-boarding strategies to ensure a smooth transition for new team members.

Have a Well-Thought Out On-boarding Plan

HR and management should collaborate to create a customized on-boarding plan for all roles within the organization. All on-boarding policies should cover a broad approach that outlines the company’s core values, corporate strategy, rules, processes, tools, and systems. For each type of role, you should also provide an easy to access folder that has everything that they will need, all in one place. This should include links to tutorials, passwords, and most importantly, directives on who to go to for help when necessary.

Second only to not feeling like there is a good cultural match, people resign because of the feelings of frustration that result in not understanding exactly what is expected of them.

Hiring managers should provide a clear-cut list of priorities, & expectations. These should be broken down by daily, weekly and monthly goals. Ensure that new hires understand exactly what is expected of them, and provide the support needed to help them achieve those expectations.

Get Employee Feedback on a Regular Basis

The value of consistent employee check-ins cannot be over-emphasized.. Assign someone, either the hiring manager or someone in HR, to conduct employee check-ins on a regular basis to ensure that they feel fully supported. When the inevitable hiccups occur, identifying the issues early, as opposed to during an exit interview, has obvious advantages. Ask open-ended questions, to encourage the new hire to feel comfortable sharing concerns on anything they have trouble understanding, discussing a personal issue, or requiring more information about a task.

Pay attention to any shortfalls new team members are experiencing, so you can better pave the way for future hires.

Bring The Employees Up to Speed with the Product/Service Life Cycle

A terrific way to incorporate a new employee into your company is to have them shadow the product or service’s lifecycle in their initial few days. Introduce them to the phases the product or service goes through to familiarize them with how everything fits together, as well as introducing them to other teams and colleagues. Giving new hires a bird’s eye view of the entire organization has profound benefits.

Provide Adequate Resources to New Employees

Get your ducks in a row prior to your new hire starting, by arranging easy access to proper training sessions, ideally on-line, that they can watch repeatedly if necessary. There is a lot to learn in the first few months of any job, and having someone on the team consistently reaching out to discuss details and offer assistance is quite literally, invaluable.

Provide the #1 Thing that Will Most Significantly Improve Retention Rates…a Buddy!

Research shows that the single most important thing that you can do to increase your chances of a smooth on-boarding process is to assign a work buddy. Ideally, this buddy will be a supervisor from a different department. The criteria for this important role is to have someone that is approachable, knowledgeable, and who has the company’s best interests at heart. Having someone that a new hire can come to with questions ranging from how to get their laptop fixed, to what the official policy is on snacks at the desk is the single most valuable thing you can do to increase retention rates.

Many companies have a policy where managers trade-off becoming assigned ‘buddies’ or mentors for new hires on other teams. They aim for a buddy lunch once a week for the first few months, asking open ended questions and paying attention to body language. Often, it is not so much what someone shares but instead their body language that will give the first indication of trouble in paradise.

After investing the time in identifying and hiring the very best person for the job, invest the energy in ensuring that they will feel welcomed upon arrival. We all know how important first impressions are and paying attention to details when someone first starts a new job is well worth the effort.

Since 1999, International Search Consultants has provided exceptionally qualified candidates for our clients across the US.

Consider reaching out to ISC today to speak with experienced recruitment professionals who can help you learn more about behavioral assessments and strategize on your next critical fill hiring need.

Contact ISC today to start a strong flow of top talent to your interview table!

Ann Zaslow-Rethaber is President of International Search Consultants. You can reach Ann directly at 888-866-7276 or email her at .

Jaami Clement is an Executive Recruiter with ISC. You can reach Jaami directly at 888-866-6625 or email her at .